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How to avoid Tenancy Deposit Disputes

A tenancy deposit protection scheme has found that two thirds of disagreements between tenants and landlords end up being settled between the landlord and tenant without proceeding to formal dispute resolution.

However, in order to achieve this Eddie Hooker, Chief Executive, mydeposits.co.uk, recommends that “... the landlord and tenant meet when the tenant is moving out, inspect the property together and come to an agreement over the amount of deposit to be returned. This avoids taking the matter through to the dispute resolution process - and the tenant will get an agreed amount of deposit back straight away..."

If the deposit is protected and no agreement can be reached, the tenant can apply for a free dispute resolution service. This is impartial and evidence-based with each case decided on by an independent adjudicator but this can become a protracted and stressful procedure. Also, the more complex the dispute the longer the duration of the dispute.

It seems the best way to avoid all this it to be a good tenant and encourage your landlord to meet you at the property right at the end of the tenancy just before you hand back the keys. In this way all issues can be raised there and then and agreed there and then. If the landlord (or the landlords agent) refuses to do this we recommend taking lots of photos of the property and also double-checking against your inventory. Landlords sometimes deduct monies simply because you have moved furniture to other rooms or had "fair wear and tear" which they then claim as damage. Photos will help in this scenario. If you make photos, you must make sure they are date stamped, this will help you if a dispute is raised.


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